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The Ocean

by C C about a year ago in fact or fiction
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A bus ride to the unknown

The Ocean
Photo by James Douglas on Unsplash

I rest my head on the bus window. The bus rumbles on its journey, destination unknown. The sun slowly starts peaking its head over the mountains in the far distance. I close my eyes, trying to rest before the sun is wide awake. I drift off to sleep.

I am running, and I hear people call my name. I refuse to turn around and keep running. I yell at the shadows in my dreams, “Please leave me alone. I want to be alone!!” I scream and scream, but they do not listen to me.

I feel tears on my cheek. I wake up and wipe them away. The sun stood proudly in the sky now, with all its bright glory. I look at my surroundings while opening the windows. A scent of fresh air and a smell of salt surrounded me. We should be at the ocean soon. The mountains are now a backdrop to green fields that guide the bus on its travel. I would take a picture, but I left my phone behind me. I think back to yesterday. I bought this ticket without a real destination in mind. I packed a bag full of clothes, my wallet, and necessities. To many, it would seem I ran away. Did I commit a crime? Maybe.

I glance around me, and a few other people are on the bus. There was an older couple a few rows ahead of me, a husband and wife. A group of older women appeared to be in their 60s, talking about their grandkids. Then there was me, alone. I was wearing a baggy shirt, a baseball cap, and sunglasses. I looked unapproachable. To others, I looked like a murder on the run, a thief in the night. But really, I was running away from my own life.

I quit my job a few days ago. I was tired of the stress that it was causing me. I told my boss he could kick rocks and dumped coffee all over his desk. I was tired of him taking advantage of me and being a narcissist freak. The pay and benefits would make anyone stay. My apartment was paid in full for the next few months. I emptied my savings and canceled my cell phone service. I sent a message to all my friends and family that I was going away on a business trip overseas. They did not ask any questions besides asking when I will be back.

Excited chatter from the bus brings me out of my thoughts. I look around and saw in the distance the ocean. The older couple in front of me were getting their cameras ready while talking about sightseeing. A smile tugs at my lips, even though I wanted to be alone on this bus ride. Their excitement fills me with warmth. I did not buy a bus ticket for a vacation or to sightsee. I wanted to be at the ocean. I feel like it is where I need to be. I did not have a specific destination in mind or a particular town.

The bus came to a stop. I gathered my belongings and hopped off the bus. The sun was still bright and threatening to give me a sunburn. After asking for directions, I made my way to the beach. The town seemed like were older folks come to retire. The houses seemed to be quite old. Maybe in the early 1900s? The porches wrapped around the homes with flowers and bushes protecting the homes like a fortress. The area was not busy and was quiet.

I turned a corner and came to a stop. I made it. Before I realized it, I was running like my life depended on it. I took off my shoes and socks as I stepped onto the sand. It was hot, but I did not mind. The beach was empty. A few people about half a mile away, but it was silent. I dropped my duffle bag, took my hat off, and ran towards the water. The ocean felt cool and refreshing.

I sat down by the water and pulled my knees close to my chest. I am here. I made it. I embrace the salt-filled air and let the water touch my toes.

I do not hear anyone yelling at me, no demands or expectations. The life I ran away from is now like the boat on the horizon, slowly drifting away and disappearing from view.

The ocean felt like it was slowly melting away each negative thought and worry. I pull my knees closer to my chest, wrap my arms around my legs and rest my head on my knees. I soak in the scenery. I close my eyes to the sound of crashing waves and fell asleep with a single tear falling down my cheek.

fact or fiction

About the author


I work full time and a single mommy. Writing is a hobby that is my escape from reality.

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